Sales are bounds to slump in the retail world - it’s inevitable. It might not even be your fault and could be completely out of your control, such as a decline in foot traffic or even seasonal slumps like just after Christmas. Declining sales don’t need to spiral out of control if you implement the right tactics.
If your sales aren’t looking great or you want to boost your sales even further, here are some valuable tips on how to increase sales in retail.
Hosting events is a great way get people involved, especially during those quieter months. Rather than trying to copy what other stores might be doing, come up with your own unique in-store events to actually give shoppers a reason to stop by.
For example, inviting loyal customers to a product launch party to give them access to certain products is a great way to make them feel valued and special. This way, they could be enticed into spending so they can get products much earlier than the general public.
Or, you could host workshops and hands-on classes to boost brand awareness and give the public the chance to personally connect with your company.
Whenever anything noteworthy happens in your store, from working with charities to opening in a new location, send out a press release to the media. The idea here is to grab any free coverage as possible so that it helps to generate a buzz about your business. When shoppers see more news about you, they’ll want to check your store out to see what the fuss has been about.
Probably the easiest and most cost-effective method to use right away is social media. Make sure you post regularly so that you have a loyal following who will engage with your social posts. Customers that see a flurry of posts and then silence for months will get a good idea that your sales are down and you’re only online for that reason.
Instead, be smart and use social media regularly so that you can position your retail store as the place to shop from.
You’ll find that a lot of major retailers waste no time in jumping on the holiday bandwagon, with Christmas being a popular one for obvious reasons. Seasons and holidays allow you to be more creative and think outside of the box with sales and events. Plus, they can be different each time.
This can include the decorations you use, the displays, what actually goes on in each event and so on. By keeping things fresh, shoppers will be more intrigued to find out what’s up your sleeve next.
Image Credit: Mall Secrets UK
For independent retailers, it can be difficult competing with the massive chains that the public usually rely on. Boost your reach by collaborating with an organisation that is both geographically close to your store or serves a similar audience. It's a fantastic way to increase awareness and sales, and build up good relationships with other businesses at the same time.
Working with a charity, on the other hand, shows that you’re thinking a lot more than sales by focusing to benefit an area through genuine charitable donations.
For example, you could offer a discount at the store you’re working with or holding a collaborative event.
This one is really simple but the fact that many well-known businesses have adopted a loyalty card scheme, from Nando's right through to Starbucks, shows that they actually work. It's a way to boost loyalty as shoppers see it as an incentive to keep spending money at this particular business.
Depending on what your store actually sells, it can be beneficial to create loyalty programs either permanently or during a specific time period. By inviting shoppers to sign up for the program, they’ll like the idea that they can work or spend towards a bigger prize.
In the long run, that means more sales for you and happier customers at the same time.
Customers love being the first to have a certain product, but what they love even more is being one of the small pool of people that own it - something the general public can’t get their hands on easily unless they pay a much higher price to purchase an item from somebody else.
When you have limited edition items, shoppers are going to want to get their hands on them first before they sell out.
For example, Starbucks’ Lilly Pulitzer water bottles flew off the shelves when they were released, so doing something similar and only releasing fewer products than usual can see both foot traffic and sales increase because of the demand.
Image Credit: Sara Krauss Photography - WWD.com
Go one step further to catch shoppers’ eyes by setting up display tables, stalls and pop-up shops either in front of your store or in a busy area where there’s a lot of foot traffic. It’s a good way to engage with the members of the public who might not be aware of your retail store or might need a little more enticing so they can see your full range of products in your actual store.
So, go to where a lot of customers are. That may be summer festivals, markets or events where other retailers set up booths or stalls. View it as a way to make potential customers aware of your store, products and services. Although they might not spend a huge amount there and then, raising that awareness can make them want to head to your actual store.
The best retail stores are the ones that stand out and offer more incentives that make the shoppers’ experience hassle-free and a lot better in general. It can be as basic as offering free WiFi right through to lounge areas and installing USB charging stations where they can charge their devices while they wait around - something might catch their eye.
Image Credit: Fortune
To see just how creative you can get, Lululemon’s flagship store in Toronto has a juice-sampling station in the front of their store. It’s a great concept which matches their wellness mission, but this ‘try before you buy’ idea can also help to boost sales as a whole.
A handmade banner or sign isn’t something that demands attention, particularly in this digital era. Now, you'll need advertising methods which look compelling enough that your retail store is instantly recognisable and something the digitally-driven public will be happy to share on their social media accounts.
The great thing about advertising is that there are so many unique avenues you can take which will make your store stand out from the ordinary. By implementing unique signage and displays, for example, customers will want to see what else makes you different from where they usually shop.
Some potential ideas that will certainly draw interest include:
Light boxes with backlit graphics and low energy LED lighting.
Point of Sale displays.
Super large banners.
Crowd barrier covers.
Exterior window graphics.
Bespoke exhibition stands.
When deciding on the type of unique advertising you want to include, make sure you do your research to see what providers can actually offer you. Check their reviews, recent projects and even pay them a visit to see which forms of advertising can be best suited to your needs and will help boost your sales.
Take The Next Step in Creating Your Own Event
Perhaps the first and biggest step towards increasing sales in retail is by making your store visually appealing enough for the public to actually walk in - let alone spend. If large format prints stand out to you, then make sure to download our product guide below.
We’ve gathered all of the information into one place so you can compare our wide range of high-quality products which narrows down which are best suited to different stores, budgets and industries.
Before diving in and committing, download your free copy by clicking the link below.